Saturday, September 14, 2013

Friday Five--What I (RE)Learned This Summer

 Lately I've been longing for a fresh start.  I plan to write more about that later...but we'll see how that goes.  Basically it comes down to that I've been fighting a battle.  And in that battle I've learned so much more about the sweetness of Jesus.  So in this new season (both literally as Autumn--my favorite season--is dawning and my life is taking a new turn) I figured what better way to organize my thoughts than my long lost blog.  So, hello friends!

To start here is a post about five things I learned (mostly re-learned) this summer::

1.  Say what you mean/Mean what you say.  I have been so guilty in my life lately of not doing this.  And it makes things to complicated.  I find myself making empty comments.  Vague compliments.  Sugarcoated "truth".  Then it's a challenge to sort through what I actually said to someone verses what I actually meant when I said it.  I tell people often that I value I have been intentionally working on being more honest.  There were times this summer when that has been rough.  And it's still a work in progress.  As is life.

2.  Protect Your Time.  Time is precious and valuable.  I had a life event this summer where I was reminded that days/moments/hours/months are precious and can be gone in an instant.  I also had several occasions where I agreed (committed) to do things and then didn't make them a priority.  I didn't work to free up the time to actually do those things.  I have a crazy busy life and this summer was no exception.  This relates back to the first thing...but I am learning to protect my time in two big ways.  First, I am not committing to too many things.  I am taking intentional time for myself.

3.  I Lack/Need Discipline.  Specifically things that can all relate back to spiritual discipline.  There are specific areas of my life that need work.  And most of that work needs to happen in my life--not outside of it.  I have made slow steps to starting.  (I've made a lot of steps in disciplining myself in the area of physical health as this summer I completed two more 5Ks making my total three!) I plan to post a Friday Five next week that shares the top five disciplines I am working on as well as the why and how. 

4.  The World Is A Beautiful Place.  I know that sounds cheesy.  But friends let me tell you...this summer I had the joyous opportunity to road trip from Missouri to Arizona with my best friend/roommate to visit my lifelong birth to earth best friend Will.  We saw so many amazing things along the way.  (Had time/money not been an issue I could have extended the road trip for days just to stop and see all the cool stuff along the way.)  We saw mountains, beautiful cities, quaint tiny towns, plains--literally just flat land as far as you could see, monuments, sculptures--including Cadillac Ranch where the sculptures are actually cars, sunrises, sunsets, cacti, a big huge (and sometimes very dark) sky, and hundreds of other things along the way.  We literally drove off into the sunset in New Mexico.  It was amazing and beautiful.  So I am learning to see the beauty in our world.  And I am finding ways to see more of it.

Right before driving into the sunset. 

5.  My Life/Family/Time Is Now.  I used to say that I would do things I thought sounded cool "when I have a family" to do them with.  I'll make photo Christmas cards when I have a husband and kids to put on them.  I'll start holiday traditions when I have a family.  I'll go on vacation when I have a family.  Well folks, here's the reality...the husband and kids part might not be part of God's plan for me.  (I have kind of refused to accept that and am speaking/praying my future children into existence...but learning to trust God with that is rough).  I have been reshaping my view on "family".  I have realized my parents, siblings and friends have built for me this amazing family.  Yes, I literally consider some of my friends my family.  (A few of them I think my parents would adopt given the chance and sell me off to the circus...)  And my time with them is now.  The time to experience life is now.  I don't want to miss it.  The discovery of the journey.  The opportunity to photograph that journey along the way.  I don't want to miss my life.  So I will cherish it--and the season I am in--now.  Whether I have five years or fifty years left to live it.

Some friends who are family and family who are friends.  A few of the blessings in my world.

I am looking forward to the learning to come.  I am greeting this season of life with open arms and a transforming heart.  I can't wait to read this a year from now and see where my life is.